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Crossrail chief executive to step down

Crossrail chief executive Rob Holden has announced he will step down later this year, less than three months after the project’s future was guaranteed at the Comprehensive Spending Review.

Mr Holden said the project needed a chief executive committed to lead right through to the opening in 2018 as the scheme now moves into the construction phases.

“I am proud to have led the Crossrail team over the past two years, and to have seen the project receive an unequivocal green light from the Government in the recent Comprehensive Spending Review,” he said.

“With the project moving into its construction phase, Crossrail needs a chief executive who can commit to lead right through to opening in 2018.”

Mr Holden joined Crossrail in April 2009, having overseen the delivery of the High Speed 1 railway between St Pancras International and the Channel Tunnel on behalf of London & Continental Railways.

After almost two years at Crossrail, he will be leaving in the course of 2011 to explore new opportunities.

Crossrail chairman Terry Morgan said: “Rob came on board soon after we secured Royal Assent to the Crossrail Act.

“He has successfully taken Crossrail from the drawing board, through the detailed design process, above all through very effective and successful negotiation with Government to secure a green light for Crossrail under the Comprehensive Spending Review, to the award of the main tunnel contracts late last year and the start of full construction.

“In the process he has achieved savings of over £1 billion in the programme, whilst preserving the project’s original scope.

“We regret his decision to step down but respect it. He leaves the project in great shape and we are on firm foundations to maintain our momentum to deliver this critically important project for the UK, on time and within budget.”

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